Sydney, Australia

You will enjoy exploring Sydney, Australia.

Headed Down Under? Be sure to book a cruise that overnights in Sydney or else arrange a hotel stay before or after your cruise. You will not want to miss all that this sensational city has to offer.

With 4 million people, Sydney is Australia’s biggest city. But big is not particularly relevant to you as a cruise passenger. What you’ll appreciate about Sydney is its gorgeous architecture, including the Sydney Opera House and the Harbor Bridge, its fascinating history (it began as a penal colony for the British empire), and its cosmopolitan culture.

On top of that, Sydney is drop-dead gorgeous. Don’t miss the sail-away (or sail into) this beautiful city.

Silver Shadow docked at the Overseas Passenger Terminal, with the Harbour Bridge in the background.

If you’re lucky, your ship will dock at Circular Quay, although some vessels dock at the Darling Harbour Passenger Terminal. Read about my experience while docked at Circular Quay.

The Overseas Passenger Terminal is situated at The Rocks.

At Circular Quay, the Overseas Passenger Terminal is situated adjacent to The Rocks, where 11 ships of England’s 800-plus ships carrying convicts to the penal colony dropped anchor in 1788. Today, The Rocks is a popular area for tourists and locals, with restaurants, shops and attractions.

Among the attractions at The Rocks is the Sydney Harbour Bridge, completed in 1932. The bridge is supported by the arch (locals refer to the bridge as the clothes hanger). Harbour Bridge climbs are offered, and you don’t have to be all that daring to make the ascent. Don’t worry, you’ll be well-instructed and protected as you climb the stairs to vertigo-inducing heights.

Across the harbor is the Sydney Opera House. You can either admire the exterior or go inside for a guided one-hour tour.

The Sydney Opera House

The Rocks (as well as the cruise terminal) is situated within easy walking distance of Sydney’s shopping districts. (Geek alert: Sydney’s Apple Store was only a 10-minute walk from the terminal, on George Street. The Apple Store offers free, and fast, wireless internet. I also bought a SIM card for my iPad 2 at the nearby Optus store: AUS$30 for 3GB of data for 30 days.)

The Rocks at night.

Got tips about how to enjoy Sydney? Leave your comments below or on Avid Cruiser’s Facebook page.

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